Update: June 27, 8:03 am:

I just watched a clip from Trump's June 25 Fox News interview with Sean Hannity where Trump referred to coronavirus as the "China plague" - yet another sign that anti-immigrant racism will be at the center of his re-election campaign.

The president is using his racist agenda in a desperate attempt to draw attention away from his own horrifying mishandling of the pandemic, which has gone far beyond merely downplaying its seriousness, but amounts to actually blocking attempts to control it.

My earlier comment appears below.

Donald Trump's June 22 order banning the issuance of H-1B, L-1 and other some other nonimmigrant visas has understandably caused considerable consternation and anxiety among immigrants and their advocates. This is despite the fact that the immediate effect of the ban is likely to be small, if any.

As I and many others have pointed out previously, the ban only affects applicants for visas at US embassies and consulates abroad - which are now almost entirely closed and not issuing visas anyway. The ban has no effect on immigrants who are currently in the United States and are filing petitions or applications with the USCIS.

However, even though the immediate effect of the ban may be quite limited, immigration advocates are right to be concerned about what may very likely be happening in the near future. Anyone who has not been asleep during the past three years can see that the April 22 and June 22 visa ban orders are only the latest steps in what has been an ongoing assault on the legal immigration system by Trump and his top immigration adviser and czar, Stephen Miller, beginning with the Muslim Ban and "Hire American" (BAHA) orders in the first week of Trump's presidency.

Nor has Trump tried to conceal the purpose of these and many subsequent moves against legal immigration - namely to exploit hatred and prejudice against immigrants who are not from, as Trump put it himself in a January 2018 comment: "Countries like Norway".

And if that were to leave any doubt about the racism at the heart of Trump's assault on legal immigration, he made this clear only within the past few days by using a vile anti-Asian epithet at his Tulsa and Phoenix rallies, amid chilling shouts of approval from his white "base" supporters.

There is no reason, therefore, to think that Trump and Miller will stop with this latest visa ban. There are already reports of new regulations under consideration which would make it much harder to receive H-1B approvals from USCIS, just as Miller's latest version of the "Public Charge" rules is expressly designed to make it more difficult for all but the most affluent family based immigrants to receive green cards.

As Trump's poll numbers continue to decline,, even in normally Trump-friendly Southern and other states such as Georgia, Texas and Arizona, we can expect even more desperate attacks on immigrants to try to divert attention away from the president's appalling mishandling of the coronavirus plague and the nationwide protests against racial injustice.

This is why immigration advocated such as Marielena Hincapie of the National Immigration Law Center are predicting even more challenging times for legal immigration coming from the Trump/Miller administration as the November election draws nearer.


To be continued.

Roger Algase
Attorney at Law